Follow TV Tropes


Completely Different Title / Japanese

Go To

Completely Different Japanese Titles.

    open/close all folders 

    Asian Animation 

    Comic Books 
  • Both Judge Dredd's films are named as such in Japan, the remake was just named Dredd anywhere.

    Eastern European Animation 
  • Mire Bala Kale Hin was partially released in Japan as Hateshinaki Michi (果てしなき道, "The Endless Roads") on April 4, 2012.

    Films — Animation 
  • Big Hero 6 is known as Baymax.
  • Brave is known as Merida to Osoroshi no Mori ("Merida and the Forest of Bravery").
  • Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation became, oddly enough, Otogi no Hoshi no Kuma-tachi (roughly translated as "The Bears from the Neighboring Stars", since the previous film didn't get released in Japan). The 2000's specials and series keeps the Care Bears title though.
  • Cars 3 becomes Cars: Crossroads.
  • Coco became the untranslated English phrase Remember Me, after the title of its central song, because the Japanese word "koko" translates as "where", and possibly because the name "Coco" is also a valid name in Japanese (as Koko/Kouko).
  • The Despicable Me series became Kaitô Gru (Phantom Thief Gru), with the installments as follows:
    • Despicable Me became Kaitō Gru no tsuki dorobou (Phantom Thief Gru, The Moon Burglar)
    • Despicable Me 2 became Kaitō Gru no Minion kiki ippatsu (Phantom Thief Gru's Minions in Danger)
    • Despicable Me 3 became Kaitō Gru no Minion dai dassō (Phantom Thief Gru's Minions' Great Escape)
  • The Emoji Movie became Emoji no Kuni no Gene (Gene in Emoji-Land). The name is a obvious reference of Alice in Wonderland, and its Japanese name (Fushigi no Kuni no Alice).
  • The Emperor's New Groove became Llama ni Natta Ou-sama (The King Became a Llama). The DTV sequel Kronk's New Groove became Llama ni Natta Ou-sama 2: Kronk no Nori Nori Daisakusen (The King Became a Llama 2: Kronk's High Spirited Big Mission).
  • Flushed Away becomes Mouse Town: Roddy no Rita no Daibouken ("Roddy and Rita's Great Adventure").
  • Frozen (2013) became Anna to Yuki no Joô (Anna and the Snow Queen). The English translation resembles the Working Title of the film.
  • Thanks to Japan's love of cute merchandisable characters, The Great Mouse Detective became Olivia-chan no Daibōken ("Little Olivia's Great Adventure").
  • The Good Dinosaur became Arlo to Shōnen ("Arlo and the Boy").
  • Hotel Transylvania became Monster Hotel.
  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame became Notre Dame no Kane (The Bells of Notre Dame) because the Japanese considered the word "hunchback" as an insult.
  • The Incredibles became Mr. Incredible. Its sequel became Incredible Family.
  • Inside Out became Inside Head.
  • Kubo and the Two Strings became Kubo: The Secret of the Two Strings.
  • The Land Before Time is known as Littlefoot.
  • The Lorax became Uncle Lorax's Seed of Secrets.
  • Luca becomes Ano Natsu no Luca ("That Summer of Luca’s").
  • Meet the Robinsons became Lewis to Mirai Dorobō ("Lewis and the Thief of the Future).
  • Moana was renamed to "Moana and the Legendary Sea" as per Disney Japan's preference to rename its animated movies with longer titles.
  • Moses: Egypt's Great Prince became The Prince of Sphinx.
  • Oliver & Company became Oliver: A New York Kitten's Story.
  • Onward became Nibun no Ichi no Mahou (roughly translated as "Half-Magic'').
  • Over the Hedge became Mori no Little Gang ("The Little Gang of the Forest").
  • The Peanuts Movie is titled I LOVE SNOOPY - THE PEANUTS MOVIE. And yes, it really is written in all caps in English aside from Snoopy's name.
  • The Princess and the Frog became Princess and the Kiss of Magic.
  • The Queen's Corgi became Royal Corgi: Rex no Daibouken (subtitle translated as Rex's Great Adventure).
  • Ratatouille became Remy no Oishii Restaurant ("Remy's Delicious Restaurant"). Which also spoils the ending.
  • Raya and the Last Dragon became Raya to Ryū no Ōkoku ("Raya and the Kingdom of Dragons").
  • Rio becomes Blu: Hajimete no Sora e ("Blu: In the Sky for the First Time").
  • The Road to El Dorado became The Golden City of El Dorado.
  • SCOOB! becomes Yowamushi Scooby no Daibōken ("Cowardly Scooby's Great Adventure"). The title is more different from the original in Japan than in other countries.
  • The Secret Life of Pets became simply as Pet.
  • The Snow Queen (2012): The third film is named Yuki no Jou'ou: Gerda no Densetsu (The Snow Queen: The Legend of Gerda) being the subtitle a reference from The Legend of Zelda.
  • Storks becomes Kōnotori Daisakusen! ("Storks Great Operation!")
  • Soul became Soulful World.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse became simply as Spider-Man: Spider-Verse with the "Into The" part removed.
  • Spies in Disguise becomes Spy in Danger, with "in" being written in English.
  • Tangled became Rapunzel at the Top of the Tower (a rough translation of Tou no Ue no Rapunzel).
  • The Tale of Despereaux became Nezumi no Kishi Despereaux no Monogatari (The Tale of Despereaux the Mouse Knight).
  • Thumbelina became Oyayubi-Hime Thumbelina.
  • Toot, Whistle, Plunk and Boom became Pukadon Kōkyōgaku (Pukadon Symphony Orchestra).
  • The Triplets of Belleville became Belleville Rendez-vous, which was the same title used in the UK.
  • Trolls: World Tour becomes Trolls: Music☆Power.
  • Up is called Carl-Jiisan no Soratobu Ie ("Carl's Flying House") in Japan.
  • Wreck-It Ralph was re-titled Sugar Rush, which is named after the candy-themed racing game that Ralph goes to. It makes sense, considering that most of the movie takes place inside that particular game, and that the eponymous credits song is sung by AKB48, a wildly popular Japanese idol band.
    • The sequel, Ralph Breaks the Internet, is re-titled as Sugar Rush: Online (which itself is a Shout-Out to Sword Art Online), despite the movie not set in the said game, but it still involves the search for a needed replacement part for the titular game and Vanellope trying to find herself out of her game.

    Films — Live-Action 

  • Anne of Green Gables becomes Red-Haired Anne.
  • A Brother's Price becomes Welcome to the Kingdom of Women. It even receives an Animesque cover illustration as if it's a light novel.
  • Cal Leandros:
    • The series is named after the first novel Nightlife, titled Yoru ni Samayou Mono (夜に彷徨うもの, "Those Who Wander in the Night").
    • Moonshine is titled Tsukikage no Wana (月影の罠, "Trap of the Moonlight").
    • Madhouse is titled Chi no Kyōen (血の饗宴, "Feast of Blood").
    • Deathwish is titled Yami no Kōka (闇の劫火, "Apocalyptic Fire of Darkness").
  • The Japanese titles of the Disney Fairies chapter books are usually pretty close to the original English, but sometimes they're completely different. For example, "The Trouble with Tink" is "Tinker Bell's Secret", "Iridessa, Lost at Sea" is "Iridessa and Tink's Big Adventure", "Tink, North of Neverland", is "Tinker Bell and Terence", and "Dulcie's Taste of Magic" is "Dulcie's Happiness Cake".
  • The Clever Princess is retitled Arete Hime no Bōken (アリーテ姫の冒険, "The Adventures of Princess Arete").
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince became Harry Potter and the Mysterious Prince. Fushigi (mysterious) is a common word for a Japanese title.
  • As The Other Wiki points out, the Japanese word Monogatari (物語) meaning tale or story, is often used in foreign translations of book titles:
  • While the novel A Song of Ice and Fire has its title translated literally to Japanese (Koori to Honoo no Uta), the sequels had different names there:
    • A Game of Thrones became Nana-oukoku no Gyokuza (The Throne of the Seven Kingdoms)
    • A Clash of Kings became Ourou-tachi no Senki (The Battle Flag of the Wolf Kings)
    • A Storm of Swords became Kenran no Daichi (The Land of the Stormy Swords)
    • A Feast for Crows became Ran'u no Kyouen (The Feast of the Rebel Crows)
    • A Dance with Dragons became Ryuu-tono no Butou (The Dance of the Dragon Lords)
    • The Winds of Winter became Fuyu no Kyoufuu (The Raging Winds of Winter)note 
    • The Hedge Knight was originally named Hourou no Kishi (The Wandering Knight), but it was changed to Kusabushi no Kishi (The Grasshopper Knight) for some reason.
  • His Dark Materials is titled Lyra's Adventure over in Japan.
  • The Discworld series became Amazing World, albeit only for the animated adaptation, as the books keeps the original name in English.
    • The animated adaptation of The Colour of Magic is named Amazing World: Yuushi no Kikan (Amazing World: The Return of the Hero), possibly a word play from the last book of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, named The Return of the King. The book, on the other hand, was named Discworld Soudouki (Discworld Riot Chronicles)
    • Equal Rites became Madoushi Eskarina (Eskarina The Wizard)
    • Wyrd Sisters became San-nin no Majou (The Three Witches)
    • Reaper Man became Kariire (Harvest)
    • Small Gods became Itanjinmon (The Inquisition)
  • The Hobbit became Hobbit no Bouken (A Hobbit's Adventure) for the original novel, but the films are named as Hobbit instead.
    • While the first movie's subtitle was translated literally from English, the last two films has different titles in Japan:
      • The Desolation of Smaug became Ryuu ni Ubawareta Oukoku (Roughly translated as "The Stoled Dragon Kingdom")
      • The Battle of the Five Armies became Kessen no Yukue (The Outcome of the Final Battle)
  • Where's Wally? became Wally o Sagase! (Find Wally!)
  • The Call and Other Stories became Mayonaka no Denwa (Midnight Phone Call)
  • The Catcher in the Rye has many different names in Japan across the years, because the translators were trying to figuring out how to effectively translate the name of the book: The first Japanese translation, published in 1952, was named Kiken na Nenrei (Dangerous Years). Another translation, published in 1964, was translated as Rye-mugibata de Tsukamaete (To Catch Something in the Rye, a more or less literal translation of the title), and yet another translation published in 1967 translated the title as Rye-mugibata no Hoshu (an even more literal translation, this time keeping the baseball term in the translation) and finally in 2003, it seems the Japanese translators gave up and decided to keep the English name written in katakana instead. (キャッチャー・イン・ザ・ライ) Oddly enough, the Japanese Wikipedia article about the book uses the 1964 title instead, rather than the modern one.
  • The Honorverse:
    • On Basilisk Station became Shin Kanchou Chakunin! (A New Battleship Captain Has Arrived!)
    • The Honor of the Queen became Grayson Koubousen (The Battle of Grayson)
    • The Short Victorious War became Nadasenkan (Naiki) Shutsugeki! (Open Sea Battleship (Traditional) Sortie!)
    • Field of Dishonor became Fukushuu no Joukanchou (The Revenge of a (female) Battleship Captain)
    • Flag in Exile became Kouchou-gun Teitoku Harrington (Space Army Admiral Harrington)
  • Rendezvous with Rama became Uchu no Rendezvous (Space of Rendezvous).
  • The Enemy Papers became Waga Tomo naru Teki (The Enemy is My Friend, or more accurately, Enemy Mine). Ironically enough, the film based in the novella was renamed in Japan as Dai Go Wakusei (The Fifth Planet).
  • The whole Redwall saga is named Redwall Densetsu (The Legend of Redwall), albeit each book has different names:
    • Redwall became Yuusha no Ken (The Sword of the Hero)
    • Mossflower became Mossflower no Mori (Mossflower Forest)
    • Mattimeo became Chiisana Senshi Mattimeo (Mattimeo the Small Warrior)
    • Mariel of Redwall became Umi kara Kita Mariel (Mariel who Came out From the Sea)
  • The Fault in Our Stars (both the novel and the film) became Kitto, Hoshi no Sei ja nai- translated as both "Surely, Don't Blame it to the Stars" or context-wise as You Cannot Blame it to Fate, For Sure, due to the East Asian belief that the fate of a person is already predestined and you cannot change it, in this case could be the main character having cancer.
  • Captain Underpants (both the books and the movie) became Super Hero Pants Man, being also the name of the eponymous character in the Japanese version.
  • A Dog's Purpose (both the book and the movie) became Boku no Wonderful Life (My Wonderful Life). The name itself is a bilingual pun, as the word "wonderful" pronounced phonetically in Japanese sounds like "wan-da-fu-ru", being "wan" the Japanese onomatopeia for a dog's bark, but also a childish slang for a dog as well. Taking this into context, the name can be also translated as "My Wonderful Dog's Life". The sequel does the same and now it was named as Boku no Wonderful Journey (My Wonderful Journey).
  • Ready Player One became Game Wars, but only for the book, as the film based in the book retains the original English name.
  • Warrior Cats became just Warriors, albeit each book had different names:
    • Into the Wild became Firepaw, Yasei ni Kaeru (Firepaw, Return to the Wild)
    • Fire and Ice became Firepaw, Senshi ni Naru (Firepaw, Become a Warrior)
    • Forest of Secrets became Fireheart no Tatakai (The Battle of Fireheart)
    • Rising Storm became Fireheart no Chousen (The Challenge of Fireheart)
    • A Dangerous Path became Fireheart no Kiki (Fireheart's Crisis)
    • The Darkest Hour became Fireheart no Tabidachi (Fireheart's Journey)
  • The Witcher became Mahou Kishi Geralt (Magic Knight Geralt). The videogames and TV series keeps the English name instead.
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid (both the novel and the film) became Greg no Dame Nikki (Greg's Useless Diary).
  • The Worst Witch is an odd case: The franchise is named in Japan with the original English name, but the books and the 2017 TV series, which was the only TV adaptation dubbed to Japanese, uses the official name Majou Gakkou (Witch School) instead:
    • The Worst Witch (the very first book) was named Majou Gakkou no Ichinensei (The Witch School's First Year Student)
    • The Worst Witch Strikes Again became Majou Gakkou no Tenkousei (The Witch School's Transfer Student)
    • A Bad Spell for the Worst Witch became Doji Majou Mil no Daidekara (The Great Achievement of the Clumsy/Worst Witch Mil), being "Mil" the Japanese name for Mildred.
    • The Worst Witch all At Sea became Majou Gakkou, Umi he Iku (The Witch School goes to the Sea)
    • The 2017 TV series became Mildred no Majou Gakkou (Mildred's Witch School). Unlike the books, Mildred retains her original name in the Japanese dub.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Bewitched is known in Japan as The Wife is a Witch (奥さまは魔女, Oku-Sama wa Majo).
  • Chips became Shiro-Bi Yarou Jon & Ponch (Motorcycle Police Guys Jon & Ponch) "Shiro-Bi" is a Japanese shorthand for a motorcycle used for law-enforcing use, in this case it stands for "Shiro(i) Bi(ke)" (White Bike, because most motorcycles used for police use are painted white).
  • Cory in the House became Cory: White House de Chō Taihen! (Cory: Super Big Trouble in the White House!)
  • Deadliest Catch became Bēringu umi no ikkakusenkin (Rush of Money in the Bering Sea).
  • Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? was called Quiz $ Millionaire, though the original title is also used in its logo.
  • George Takei once joked that the Japanese title of Star Trek was "Sulu, Master of Navigation", which isn't true but is kinda funny. The actual Japanese title of Star Trek: The Next Generation is Shin Star Trek (New Star Trek).
  • My So-Called Life became Angela 15-sai no Hibi (15-Year-Old Angela's Days).
  • Game of Thrones keeps the original name in English in the Japanese version, but for some odd reason they gave each season a subtitle when the seasons in the original English version are nameless instead (Probably as a homage to the Japanese titles of the novels):
    • The first season is Nana-oukoku Senki (Chronicles of the Seven Kingdoms)
    • The second one is Oukoku no Gekitou (Clash of the Kingdoms)
    • The third and fourth seasons are Senran no Arashi: Senben (third)/Kouhen (fourth) (Storm of War: Prequel/Sequel)
    • The fifth and sixth seasons uses the Japanese names of A Dance of Dragons and The Winds of Winter respectively. (see above for details)
    • The seventh season is named after the Japanese translation of the original book A Song of Ice and Fire (again, see above for details).
    • The eighth and final season is named "Saishuushou" (The Final Episode) because there's no official Japanese translation for the last planned book, "A Dream of Spring".
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer in Japan was (roughly) "Buffy 〜 Loving Cross" to emphasize the romantic elements.
  • The Italian/Spaniard TV film Imperium: Nerone becomes Nero: The Dark Emperor. Yes, the Japanese title is in English.
  • Walker, Texas Ranger became Honoo no Texas Ranger (Burning Texas Ranger)
  • Bear in the Big Blue House became Nokku! Nokku! Youkoso Bear House (Knock! Knock! Welcome to the Bear House)
  • Get Smart became Soreyuke! Smart (roughly as Let's Go! Smart). The film retains the same name in English though.
  • The Man from U.N.C.L.E. became 0011 Napoleon Solo.
  • Switched at Birth became "Switch ~A Quirk of Fate~". The DVD boxsets do include the original title though.
  • Murder, She Wrote became Jessica Obasan no Jikenbo (Auntie Jessica's Case Files).
  • Freaks and Geeks became Freaks Gakuen (Freaks Academy).
  • Mission: Impossible became Spy Daisakusen (Operation Spy).
  • Smallville became Young Superman.
  • MythBusters became Ayashii Densetsu (Dubious Legends, albeit in-context it could also mean "Dubious Myths")
  • Danger 5 became Kiken Sentai Danger 5: Ware wa Teki wa Soutou Heika (Danger Squadron Danger 5: Our Enemy is the Fuhrer). The name is a very obvious reference of the Super Sentai franchise.
  • Chilling Adventures of Sabrina became Sabrina: Dark Adventure.
  • Locked Up (Vis a Vis in Spanish) came Lock Up: Spain Joshi Keimu-sho (Lock Up: Spain's Prison for Women). The title shares the same title, both in English and phonetic Japanese, with the Sylvester Stallone's film Lock Up, hence the subtitle. By sheer coincidence (or not) both the Spaniard TV series and the Stallone's film are about the main character being sent to prison.
  • Red Dwarf became Uchuu-sen Red Dwarf-go (Spaceship Red Dwarf).
  • Whiskey Cavalier became Codename: Whiskey Cavalier - Futari wa Saikyo Spy (subtitle translated as "The Most Powerful Spying Duo")
  • The Worst Witch became Mildred no Majou Gakkou (Mildred's Witch School), when "Majou Gakkou" is the official Japanese name of the franchise.

  • In the 60's and 70's it was common practice in Japan to rename songs and albums, presumably because the (mostly English) original titles were considered too hard to pronounce for the average Japanese. Some examples:
    • Mary Hopkin, "Those Were the Days" → "Kanashiki Tenshi" (Angel of Sadness)
    • The Rolling Stones, "Fool To Cry" → "Orokamono no Namida" (The Tears of the Foolish One)
    • The Beatles, "I Should Have Known Better" from A Hard Day's Night → "Koisuru Futari" (Couple in Love)
    • Pink Floyd, "A Saucerful Of Secrets" (both the album and its title track) → "Shinpi" (Mystery)
    • Pink Floyd, The Dark Side of the Moon → Kyōki (Madness), which is at least pretty apt
    • Procol Harum, "A Whiter Shade of Pale" → "Aoi Kage" (Blue Shadow)
    • Olivia Newton-John, "Have You Never Been Mellow" → "Soyokaze no Yuuwaku" (Temptation of the Breeze)
    • Carpenters, "(They Long to Be) Close to You" → "Harukanaru Kage" (A Faraway Shadow)
    • Carpenters, "For All We Know" → "Futari no Chikai" (Our Vow)
    • Carpenters, "It's Going to Take Some Time" → "Chiisana Ai no Negai" (Wishing for a Little Love)
    • Carpenters, "Let Me Be the One" → "Anata no Kage ni Naritai" (I Want to Be Your Shadow)
    • Carpenters, "We've Only Just Begun" → "Ai no Prelude" (Prelude to Love)
    • Carpenters, "I Need to Be in Love" → "Seishun no Kagayaki" (Brilliance of Youth)
    • Herman's Hermits / Carpenters, "There's a Kind of Hush" → "Mitsumeau Koi" (Staring Love)
    • Carpenters, "I Won't Last a Day Without You" → "Ai wa Yume no Naka ni" (Love Is in a Dream)
    • The Miracles, "Waldo Roderick DeHammersmith" → "Chainataun no Yūrei" (The Ghost of Chinatown)
    • Eric Carmen, "Never Gonna Fall In Love Again" → "Koi ni No Touch" (No Touch in Love)
  • Bon Jovi, Slippery when WetWild in the Streets
  • Air Supply, "Making Love Out of Nothing At All" → "Nagisa no Chikai" (A Vow at the Shore)
  • Air Supply, "Just As I Am" → "Shiokaze no Love Call" (Sea Breeze Love Call)
  • Air Supply, "Two Less Lonely People in the World" → "Yoake no Futari" (Couple at Dawn)
  • Air Supply, "The One That You Love" → "Seaside Love"
  • Air Supply, "I'll Never Get Enough Of You" → "Anata no Inai Asa" (Morning Without You)
  • Air Supply, "Even The Nights Are Better" → "Sayonara Lonely Love" (Goodbye, Lonely Love)
  • Sneaker, "More Than Just the Two of Us" → "Omoide no Sneaker" (Memory's Sneakers)

    Tabletop Games 
  • 15 Love became Portable Table Tennis.

  • Stretch Armstrong became Mister X.

    Video Games 

    Web Video 
  • The Angry Video Game Nerd in earlier fansubs it was named as Ikareru Video Game Yarou (The Angry Video Game Guy), but later fansubs translated the name as Ikareru Video Game Otaku (The Angry Video Game Otaku), albeit for all practical effects, it stands for the same thing as in English.

    Western Animation 

  • The Statue of Liberty became Jiyuu no Megami (The Goddess of Liberty).
  • Just like in Spanish, U.S. Memorial Day is translated differently in Japanese, as it's translated as Senbotsu Shohei Tsuitou Kinenbi. (Literally as "Day of Mourning The (Military) Officers Who Died in Combat") Keep in mind Japanese is a very contextual language that requires normally the complete context of a complete phrase. This is an very stark contrast with other East Asian languages based in the Chinese alphabet, like Korean (who is normally kept the name from English, only written in Korean alphabet) and Chinese (translated as simply as "Day of the Dead Soldiers", who is technically the same thing)
  • 20th Century Studios / 20th Century Fox is probably one of the few American studios whose name is different in Japan, despite the translated name stands for the same thing, as it's normally translated as 20 (NiJu, Japanese for 20)-Seiki Fox/Studios rather than using the Century part transliterated to katakana, probably to make the name of the studio easier to pronounce in Japanese. The same thing is applied towards their former owners, 21th Century Fox (21 (NiJuIchi)-Seiki Fox).
  • A very odd case happens with the translation to Japanese of Senegalese Wrestling, the traditional fighting sport of that country, and overlapping with both Woolseyism and Cultural Translation of sorts: Rather than translating the name literally from either English, Serer (Njom), or French (Lutte sénégalaise), the name of the sport is translated as "Senegalese Sumo", due to the similarities between Senegalese wrestling and its Japanese counterpart. Even Senegalese wrestlers are referred to in Japanese as Rikishi, the Japanese term for a sumo wrestler, instead of using the term "wrestler" in English. Keep in mind unlike either Sumo and its Asian cousins, the Korean Ssireum and Mongolian wrestling, the Senegalese version is not related of neither of them in any way.
    • This is not exclusive from that sport: There's a equivalent in Spain, more precisely in the Canary Islands, named "Lucha Canaria", who is also named in Japan as "Canarian Sumo". Unlike the Senegalese counterpart, the Spanish name is kept as such in Japan.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: